Student Drug Use, Tommy's Bake Sale, Weapons Cache Top 2013 Stories

Here are the top stories in Bristol and Warren for 2013, according to readers.

Natalie and Tommy Swift. Credit: Bristol Warren Patch file photo
Natalie and Tommy Swift. Credit: Bristol Warren Patch file photo

News stories on crime and mayhem always attract readers. It’s no different on the Bristol-Warren Patch, where the top stories of 2013 included plenty of police and fire department incidents and arrest reports. 

But the top stories of all this year in Bristol and Warren, according to our readers, were not police and fire incidents.

By far the most read story in Bristol and Warren concerned a study done on the use of illegal drugs in Rhode Island’s schools. Students in Bristol and Warren earned the ignominious distinction of being cited as the biggest users of illegal drugs. Click here for that story. 

The annual Fourth of July celebration in Bristol also gets plenty of attention from readers. This year a story that listed all of the places around Rhode Island for fireworks displays actually topped the list of Independence Day stories. Click here for that story. 

Then there was the story about the 7-year-old Warren boy who held a bake sale to raise funds for his mother, Natalie Swift, who has ALS. It collected $7,000 on an April Saturday, including online donations. Click here for the story. 

A crime story did push its way into the top 5 stories of 2013 in Bristol and Warren. It involved the Bristol police’s discovery that a reputed drug-dealing Roger Williams University student had stockpiled a cache of weapons and drugs in a house near the Guiteras Elementary School. Firefighters actually tipped off he police after finding a weapon while extinguishing a blaze in a home being rented by the alleged drug dealer. Click here for that story.

Another top crime story involved the recent arrest of a Warren man for allegedly strangling a Swansea woman to death in 2012. He will be arraigned today. Click here for the original story. 

A Prudence Island couple is among four residents there who would like to start and run the ferry service to the island that has been operated by a Bristol operator for many years. The application has been going through the hearing process at the RI Public Utilities Commission. Click here for the original story.

The Bristol County Water Authority raised rates by 11 percent after telling the town councils in Bristol, Warren and Barrington that it would run out of operating income by the end of 2013 if it didn’t get more cash. Click here for story.

A proposed ordinance to protect trees in Warren got felled by the Town Council, 3-2, after months of work by a committee set up specifically to draft an ordinance. Click here for the story.

Another plan to develop the long-vacant former Tourister complex in Warren was presented by its new owners to the Planning Board this year. The board is still waiting for a formal application from Brady Sullivan Properties of Manchester, NH, and Starr Development Partners of Belmont, Mass., for the construction of 200 apartments and 90,000 square feet of commercial space. Click here for the story. 


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